After hearing so many positive things about Austin, TX I was eager to see what it was all about! My first day exploring Austin, I had a great breakfast at Magnolia Cafe which had delicious food and great atmosphere! After hearing about how Austin has so much good food, my first meal lived up to the hype! After a great breakfast, I rode my bike around most of the day exploring the city. Austin has tons of fun and scenic trails for walking, running, and biking throughout the city.
I rode over to the Capitol Building which was flying its flag at half-mast due to the Orlando Massacre. Although it was hard to not be home to spend time with friends and family and support my city during this tragedy, it was really nice to see how much love an support the rest of the country had to offer. The victims, their loved ones, and my hometown are in my heart wherever I travel.
I knew that I would be traveling through the south / southwest during the hottest time of year, but I didn&t anticipate it getting up to record breaking temperatures. At one point my car said it was 129 degress outside!! Since it was so hot, I had to find some springs or pools to cool off in. I went to a couple different spots, but Barton Springs was definitely my favorite! I met an interesting girl that brought her Bearded Dragon to the springs! I also went to HOPE Outdoor Gallery which was supposed to condominiums that were never finished. Now it is a place where anyone can go and spray paint any of the walls. There was some beautiful art with some political and social ideas expressed.
I stayed in Austin for about 4 days, the rest of my time there was dedicated to getting a feel for the city life. I went to some cool bars and restaurants. Everyone was super friendly and welcoming to me. I met a bunch of cool people that were able to give advice on cool things to do and see in the city. I went to 512 Brewery to check it out, only to learn that it didnt sell beer. And apparently they only offer tours on the weekend. But I met a couple of the employees and they ended up hooking me up with a bunch of free beer and a brewery glass! Good Times in Austin! Thanks, Caroline for showing me around and letting me crash on your couch!
After leaving Austin, I headed further west to Marfa. Marfa is a small town with a population of about 2,000 people. Marfa has lots of art galleries, and has a big influence of minimalist design. Despite being such a small town, Marfa was beautiful and also happened to have a couple cool bars. I checked in to my campsite at El Cosmico (Another place I definitely recommend). El Cosmico was a very cool nomadic campground that believes in a balance between adventure and do-nothingness. They have a variety of accommodations including Teepees, Yurts, Safari Tents, AirStreams, and Tent Camping. After I checked in and set up camp, I wandered into town on my bike in search of a bar and some food. I stumbled upon the Beer Garden which was an eclectic bar that had an awesome patio with a ping pong table, teepee, and a vintage school bus.
After getting a beer and strolling around the Beer Garden, I ran into some people that were also staying at El Cosmico. We ended up hanging out most of the night, did some bar hopping, taco eating, and then went to check out the mysterious Marfa Lights. The Marfa Lights are an unexplained phenomenon of blinking, flashing, and moving lights over the horizon. There have been theories about what causes the lights, but none can seem to provide a real explanation. The lights were just as mysterious and interesting as I expected, and left us awestruck! After exploring the town a bit the next morning I was ending my short stay in Marfa to continue North West into New Mexico.